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Socioeconomic determinants of protein and calorie consumption and potential risk of protein-energy malnutrition among households in South-West Nigeria

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Purpose ‐ The study aimed to investigate the problem of malnutrition among Nigerian households with emphasis on protein and calorie intake. Design/methodology/approach ‐ Multi-stage random sampling approach was used to select 321 household members drawn from a total of 80 households. A combination of descriptive and inferential statistics was applied in analysing the data. Findings ‐ The study revealed that household income, dependency ratio, education and gender of household head, among others, are factors that would significantly influence per capita daily calorie and protein intake of households. Protein-energy malnutrition is more of inadequate calorie than protein intake. There was confirmatory evidence of inadequate consumption of calorie among pre-school and school age children, while adult male members seemed to consume the above requirements with the possibility of being at the risk of obesity. Though children were undernourished, they are unlikely to be marasmic. Originality/value ‐ The study examined the problem of malnutrition among Nigerian households with emphasis on protein and calorie intake. Socio-economic factors influencing per capita calorie and protein intakes as well as the possible risks of protein-energy malnutrition among household members were also examined. The patterns of intake of calorie and protein consumption among household members indicated the possibility of over-nutrition and under-nutrition coexisting among members of the households with over-nutrition and potential risks of obesity in adult males and under-nutrition among pre-school and school age children.
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Keywords: Nutrition; Poverty

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 7, 2014

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